Who We Are

Meet the team making it happen

As the statewide alliance for land trusts, Gathering Waters supports its 40+ member land trusts by providing technical assistance, training, and continuing education. In addition to serving as a unified voice for Wisconsin’s land trust community and building capacity for permanent land protection, Gathering Waters promotes better public understanding and support for land trusts and encourages public policies that strengthen Wisconsin’s land and water conservation efforts.

The idea for an organization like Gathering Waters was born at the first Wisconsin Land Trust Conference in 1988. About a dozen conservation organizations attended and all agreed that a permanent statewide network of land trusts would be beneficial. At the time, the thought was to create a statewide technical assistance center.

During the early 1990s, several state land trusts worked with the Wisconsin DNR and The Nature Conservancy to organize two more statewide conferences. That same informal group successfully authored a nonprofit conservation organization grant through the Wisconsin DNR’s Stewardship Fund. These efforts helped make Wisconsin a leader in public support for private conservation action, but fell short of creating the permanent technical assistance center envisioned previously.

In 1994, Governor Thompson, along with other legislators, introduced legislation to provide a grant for an organization to be established to assist land trusts in the state. Gathering Waters was the recipient of that grant, and was incorporated in June of 1994, receiving its tax-exempt status from the IRS in early 1995. We have served the growing Wisconsin land trust community ever since.

Mike Carlson (he/him)

Executive Director

Portrait of Chris Gutschenritter

Chris Gutschenritter (he/him)

Director of Land Conservation Law Program

Meg Domroese (she/her)

Director of Programs and Impact

Charles Carlin (he/him)

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Portrait of Creal Zearing

Creal Zearing (she/her)

Director of Philanthropy

Patricia McMurtrie (she/her)

Annual Giving and Outreach Manager

Portrait of Julie Allen

Julie Allen (she/her)

Accounting Manager

Portrait of Amanda Jutrzonka

Amanda Jutrzonka (she/her)

Communications and Outreach Coordinator

Portrait of Rhianon Morgan

Rhianon Morgan (she/they)

Operations Coordinator

Mike Carlson (he/him)

Executive Director

Portrait of Chris Gutschenritter

Chris Gutschenritter (he/him)

Director of Land Conservation Law Program

Meg Domroese (she/her)

Director of Programs and Impact

Charles Carlin (he/him)

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Portrait of Creal Zearing

Creal Zearing (she/her)

Director of Philanthropy

Patricia McMurtrie (she/her)

Annual Giving and Outreach Manager

Portrait of Julie Allen

Julie Allen (she/her)

Accounting Manager

Portrait of Amanda Jutrzonka

Amanda Jutrzonka (she/her)

Communications and Outreach Coordinator

Portrait of Rhianon Morgan

Rhianon Morgan (she/they)

Operations Coordinator

Board of Directors

Matt Reetz

Chair - Madison

Mike Koutnik

Vice Chair - Eagan, MN

Carol Abrahamzon

Secretary - Caledonia, MN

Carol Fisher

Treasurer - Madison

Jeff Ottum

Door County

Kevin Thusius

Cross Plains

Land Trust Council

An advisory body to support the Wisconsin land trust community

The Land Trust Council informs Gathering Waters’ programs and initiatives. The leaders on the Council provide critical advice that keeps our services relevant, timely, and useful as we pursue our collective mission of protecting the places that make Wisconsin special.

Council participation is voluntary. Council members share ideas, serve as liaisons with land trust community members, and advise on Gathering Waters’ programs. The Council meets annually in person and periodically by teleconference.

Carol Abrahamzon, Chair

Mississippi Valley Conservancy

Ted
Anchor

Northwoods
Land Trust

Jennifer
Filipiak

Driftless Area Land Conservancy

Clint
Miller

The
Conservation Fund

Linda
Mutschler

Cedar Lakes Conservation Foundation

Tom
Stolp,
Vice Chair

Ozaukee Washington Land Trust

Alison
Volk

American Farmland Trust

Angela
West Blank

Groundswell Conservancy

Land Conservation Law Program Advisory Council

The Land Conservation Law Program Advisory Council is a body of legal experts each with varying experience in conservation law. They assist and advise the director of the Law Program.

Committee Members

Christopher Hughes

Partner, Stafford Rosenbaum LLP

Maureen Kinney

Attorney at Law, Johns, Flaherty & Collins, S.C.

Peter McKeever

Retired Attorney, Law Office of Peter E. McKeever, LLC

Bill O’Connor

Attorney at Law, Boardman Clark LLP

 

Nancy Peterson

Retired Partner, Quarles & Brady LLP

Alison Volk

Land Protection Projects Deputy Director, American Farmland Trust

Eli Woyke

Attorney at Law, Small Batch Law LLC

Community Support

As an alliance, collaboration is inherent to who we are. Beyond our land trust members and the individuals listed above, we work regularly with a variety of partners to advance conservation in Wisconsin.

Board Member Portal

Please click the link below to log-in. If you have any questions or need help accessing the log in, please reach out to Rhianon@gatheringwaters.org.